Blackbird Song

There is a happy blackbird who sings outside our house with such a carefree , Jack the Lad song.  It contains a boastful, fit-to-burst whistle, like he’s dating the best catch around (perhaps attracting her is the intention behind his song), and some gorgeous trilling.   The household have all noticed and love him.  I’ve never heard the likes of it before, and yes, it is a blackbird – yesterday I witnessed him singing from an overhead wire during my quiet time.  This morning he started at 5.24am and I was quite happy with that. Whether I’m in the front of the house or the back, I’m always listening out for him.  He even sings in the rain, with apparently nothing dampening his spirits.

     I keep thinking of a song lyric that contains the words ‘you surround me with a song’ – I questioned myself, is that biblical? In fact, it is: ‘You are my hiding place; You preserve me from trouble; You surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah.’[1]

     God surrounds us so much better than this wonderful blackbird melody, heard from every room of the house. He never leaves our side, though of course we don’t hear or see him in quite the same way. Life has had its stresses lately, and yesterday was no exception: health problems and related school struggles for our youngest, and Eliott’s girlfriend rushed to hospital in an ambulance. Yet hearing this blackbird steadies me, reminds me it’s right to be joyful, even when circumstances are far from perfect, and points me to the one who surrounds me with his own song.  The ultimate ‘deliverance’ is down to the salvation Jesus has wrought by his death and resurrection. But he’s in the midst of our troubles too, and singing, as we should be ourselves… he sees the solutions beyond our problems, and reminds us that we can be confident in him, keep our eyes on him, while we wait for those solutions to come.  It is such an incredible thing that our God sings songs about us – about you and about me.  It’s right and fitting that we delight in him and sing to him[1], but hard to get our minds around that he would sing over us.  ‘Songs of deliverance’ then: about what Jesus has done for us… fair enough, we could say.  But perhaps he sings songs that celebrate our love for him? Something inside me wants me to think this is impossible, somehow wrong to even consider.  Yet in Zephaniah we also read ‘he will rejoice over you with singing.’[2] Can we really assume that he does this of us?  Don’t we struggle to grasp that God delights in us, cherishes us, is so glad that we’ve acknowledged and belong to him? That he does is really staggering, astonishing.

     The blackbird is singing even louder now as I write this, right outside my window – insistent, joyful, delighting in life, apparently.  He wants his song to be heard.  Likewise, God wants us to get that he is pleased with us.  Whenever I hear that blackbird now I’m going to try to accept the thought that God himself revels in my love for him… even sings about it. I must remind myself that he’s more present than this little avian crooner, too.  Ever present, in fact.  He really is like the prodigal’s father in Jesus’s parable[3], running to meet us on the road, welcoming us home into his love.  And the more I think about his love for me – so misplaced I feel – the more I love him back.

[1] Psalms 32:7 New International Version (NIV)

‘Yes, Jesus loves me’ and almost every hymn and contemporary Christian song ponders the miracle of God’s love.

[2] Zephaniah 3:17. “The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.”

[3] Luke 15:11-32.


Psalms 32:7 New International Version (NIV)

[2] Zephaniah 3:17. “The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.”

[3] Luke 15:11-32.

6 thoughts on “Blackbird Song

  1. Marion

    So true Caroline… my garden blackbird sings his heart out too… from the top of the tallest tree. Every day he and his mate sometimes, come close to my window for all the goodies I put out for the birds. Grated cheese seems his favourite.
    Now that I am so restricted, mostly to this room, I take much joy from watching all God’s creatures… mostly of the feathered variety… and I feel calmed and happy with my lot. This is surely the nearest place to Heaven I could possibly be, a stepping off point that delights me every day,
    God willing I will soldier on for a long time yet, to see my granddaughter married in September and watch my family as they live their fulfilling lives.
    It is a truth that was put so beautifully by someone before
    ‘ You are nearer to God in the garden than anywhere else on earth’
    and I feel truly blessed.
    Thank you Caroline and Rupert too…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Marion! I’m pleased to hear you have a blackbird couple that visit you. I’ve not put out grated cheese before – useful to know.
      How exciting that you have a wedding to look forward to! And yes, you absolutely must keep soldiering on.
      Thinking of you enjoying your special garden.
      Caroline x


  2. Sue gordon

    To read this early on Sunday morning was very moving, and started the day on a positive, happy note. Thank you Caroline. Your words are very beautiful. And the illustration too. Sue x


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